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CorpWatch Announces Version 2.0 of the CrocTail Corporate Subsidiaries Database and Open API

Special to CorpWatch
November 24th, 2009

CorpWatch announces the release of a second version of the CrocTail application and open CorpWatch API, developed with support from the Sunlight Foundation.

CrocTail
provides an interface for browsing information about several hundred thousand U.S. publicly traded corporations and their many foreign and domestic subsidiaries. Information from company Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings has been parsed and annotated by CorpWatch to highlight specific corporate accountability issues. The new version includes filings from 2003 to 2009, and it will be updated every month. CrocTail also serves as a demonstration of the features and data available through the CorpWatch API.

CrocTail is an extension of the Crocodyl.org Wiki web site project, an online compendium profiling the accountability and transparency track records of multinational corporations.

By visiting CrocTail, users can search the entire subsidiaries database; and see a window displaying known issues with subsidiaries, direct links to the root SEC filings, and links to the Crocodyl.org profile; a world map pinpointing subsidiary locations; and an expandable subsidiary tree for navigating the hierarchy. In this new version, users can click on different years and see how subsidiary relationships for a company have changed over time. (For example, see Halliburton Co.) The site also has an edit mode, making it possible for registered researchers to add value by tagging subsidiaries with issues notes which will be automatically linked to the parent company profiles

What does the CorpWatch API do that the SEC doesn’t?

Although the SEC website has a search page for locating company filings (EDGAR / IDEA), the subsidiary information is not standardized. The CorpWatch developers wrote parsers to “scrape” the subsidiary relationship information from Exhibit 21 of the 10-K filings, and then built an "API" (Application Programming Interface) to provide a well-structured interface for web programs to query and process the
subsidiary data.

Coded by Skye Bender-deMoll and Greg Michalec, the CorpWatch API is available free to anyone who registers and abides by the Terms of Service. The API is fully documented. Using the API requires enough programming knowledge to be able to parse JSON or XML. For more information visit: http://api.corpwatch.org.

About CorpWatch

CorpWatch is a non-profit organization dedicated to investigative research and journalism to expose corporate malfeasance and to advocate for multinational corporate accountability and transparency. We seek to expose multinational corporations that that profit from war, fraud, environmental, human rights and other abuses, and to provide critical information to foster a more informed public and an effective democracy.

Websites: http://community.corpwatch.org, http://www.Crocodyl.org